Multi-million pound plans to transform Birmingham's New Street Station have been unveiled.
Birmingham's biggest rail station is set for a revamp
It has been dubbed one of Britain's top eyesores in the past, but the makeover could change all that.
On Thursday a £500m plan for the station, called Birmingham Gateway, was announced by Network Rail.
Work will include a new enlarged airport-style concourse and a glass roof. It is expected to start in 2008 and last around four-and-a-half years.
A total of £350m will come from the public sector with the rest being raised from the commercial development of the south side of the station.
Birmingham Gateway Scheme
Better access to platforms with 42 new escalators and 14 new lifts
A new, enlarged concourse three times bigger than the current space
A high-tech transparent roof
Transformation of the concourse into a giant atrium
Comfortable, spacious waiting lounges
World-class customer information systems
A new contemporary station exterior
Two new open public spaces
New pedestrian links across the city with direct access and interchange with the planned Metro stop in Stephenson Street
Councillor Mike Whitby, leader of Birmingham City Council, said: "Birmingham Gateway is the product of a lot of hard work and analysis by a strong partnership of dedicated professionals.
"As well as being a catalyst for economic development at the heart of our city, this scheme is good value for money and would deliver significant wider regeneration potential for the region."
Network Rail's operation and customer services director Robin Gisby said the station handles 35 million passengers and the Gateway scheme would transform the station.
"It would provide passengers with world-class facilities, enabling New Street to accommodate the growth of the railway for generations to come," he said.
"It will be a great gateway to a great city."